Thursday, October 25, 2007

The Colorado Rockies, Faith & The World Series

So...I don't usually talk about Baseball here, but after my last post, it's probably a good idea.

I wish I could post an audio file of the voicemail I received from my dad the night the Colorado Rockies officially made it into the world series. My dad was at the game (which ended very late) and left a message that was something to the extent of "whoa hoo. we're going to the world series...woo hoo. listen to this, listen to this..." at which point he held out the phone to the sound of cheering in LoDo in Denver.

So with that in mind, I am very sad that in game one of the world series the Rockies lost bad to the Red Sox 13-1.

Ando proposes that teams that wear purple may not be able to wear championships, looking back at the Minnesota Vikings inability to win any of their four SuperBowls. But as an alumni of a purple college & hopful for the Rockies in 2007 I saw "please don't let it be so."

In June 2006 I wrote about the faith of the Rockies (as covered in USA Today May 06, The Rockey Mountain News and Christianity Today). And I was surprised to see the LA Times requoting that article yesterday, wondering if people would tie in a faith element to the Rockies unbelievable post-season success.

LA Times writers, Dave Zirin & Tom Krattenmaker, are critical in the article of Matt Holliday's controversial play in the 13th-inning against San Diego that sent them into post-season. The LA Times article questions which is stronger in the lives of religious sports stars...the drive to win or the drive to do what's right. Ultimately the criticism is that the pull of sports is stronger than the pull of God in people like Holliday (and other Colorado sports figures like Bill McCartney, University of Colorado football coach and founder of Promise Keepers).

As Collin Hansen said in the Christianity Today article last year: "God does not promise that our good behavior will reap financial rewards—or wins. He does not promise to protect us from suffering—or injuries. He promises much more for his people—that justice will ultimately be done, that if we remain faithful, we will live with him and enjoy him forever."

Here's hoping that the Rockies come back fresh after Game 1 and win the World Series. Not for the glory and honor of God, because it certainly doesn't reflect on Him, but rather for the long-term health of my Father who will surely get very worked up during each and every game, and also for myself...I'd love to see the Rockies win, I have many fond memories of games at Mile High Stadium and Coors Field.


Anonymous said...

As for purple-clad opulence: LA Lakers. When you combine their time in the NBL, BAA & NBA they have 27 Division Titles, 28 Conference & a womping 15 Championship Titles. Being garbed in the kings colors cannot be all that bad.

Ando said...

Excellent point Jgons. My theory appears to be null.

Thanks for those articles. I think what non-Christians don't understand is that as Christians we are not supposed to compartmentalize our lives. Our faith should permeate every facet. How that should manifest itself publicly in the world of professional sports though is a toughie. Does God care who wins? What if there are Christians on both teams? That's why when I pray before I play a church league softball game, I pray for us to have a good time, be good witnesses, and not get hurt, and not for a win.

Anonymous said...

You are the best son in the whole world, again sorry for the late wake up call from your dad :)

weepingsam said...

I'm not sure how Holliday's play at the plate says anything about his religion. He's a professional baseball player - his job is to win. It is the umpires' job to make calls like that, and if they miss it they miss it. In a church softball league with some some high school kid umping - yeah - that's a different story. You probably should tell the truth, point out the truth, even if no one else notices. But you should do that anyway... But if you have umps to do that - it's their job. At the professional level, it's probably their job completely. As a player you are expected to play to win, take what is given. It's different with out and out cheating - throwing spitballs, corking bats, steroids - but phantom tags and not admitting that the umpire missed a call in your favor are a long ways from that.

As for the rest - I have no doubt christian groups will try to exploit a rockies win. But that's just celebrity - celebrity sells, religion, shoes, charities, whatever - it's hard to fault anyone involved for it, really. Someone like Holliday or Curt Schilling or whoever has opinions, why shouldn't they share them? Now - the implication that there is some kind of moral referendum in a baseball game is pretty dubious. Cheering for a team because they are or aren't religious seems kind of silly, but once you get past your home team, the reasons for cheering for or against other teams get pretty arbitrary anyway. I suppose if someone in Cleveland cheered for the Rockies because of their christianity that's no more arbitrary than me cheering for the Padres because Jake Peavy's one of the anchors of my fantasy team.

nate said...

I can't wait to hear this God/Sports story in the form of sermon illustration from countless pastors across the US for the next few years to come. Woo hoo! Really, I can't wait!

Anonymous said...

Looking for World Series tickets?

Ticket auctions ending now, bid early.